March 4, 2010

NORTH WINDHAM UNION CHURCH

— ADDRESS: 723 Roosevelt Trail

DENOMINATON: United Church of Christ

HISTORY: On Feb. 27, 1871, an agreement was signed by 43 contributors to pay for and build a Free Meeting House at North Windham for all religious denominations. On June 30, 1930, the present church body was formed with 33 members and designated the North Windham Union Church, continuing as a nondenominational church.

Before 1954, Sunday school was held in the church sanctuary, and when this space became inadequate, arrangements were made with the North Windham Community Association to use the community building behind the church. In 1957, church members voted to raise the money to help build a new parish hall.

In 1958, they moved their Sunday school classes there.

In October 1958, the Women's Guild of the church opened the Windham Thrift Shop in the basement of the parish hall. It is sponsored by donations from the people of the church as well as the community at large. It serves as an outreach in the community, and continues to play a vital role in supporting the church program and its ministry.

In 1964, a decision was made to join the Maine Conference United Church of Christ and become the North Windham Union Church UCC.

When the membership outgrew its original building, the congregation moved into the parish hall for 18 years. After years of planning and fundraising, a new sanctuary was built, and the old church building was moved across the driveway. It is now known as the Little Meeting House.

The new church sanctuary was built with the volunteer help of people in the congregation. It was dedicated in June 1994. It seats 325 worshippers, with a full balcony and air conditioning for the summer months.

In 2000, the Rev. Dana C. Reed became senior minister of the church. He also serves as a Navy Reserve chaplain with the rank of captain. Since Sept. 11, 2001, he has twice been called to active duty, and the membership is proud of his service to Marines and sailors.

The parish hall and church serve the community by providing space for the Boy Scouts, Alcoholics Anonymous, Tops, blood drives, cancer support groups, quilt shows, concerts, the Lake Region Job Transition Network and many church events that are open to everyone. Throughout the school year, there is a Friday movie/game night. The annual Christmas Fair will be held Nov. 21.

FUTURE PLANS: Plans include a visioning process that will project the needs of the church and community 10 years down the road.

WORSHIP SERVICES: Services and church school are held at 10 a.m. Sundays.

CONTACT: 892-6142; E-mail: joannwuc@roadrunner.com

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